The search is over. Yahoo just named Scott Thompson as its new Chief Executive Officer, effective January 9, 2012. It’s been four long months for Yahoo after ousting Carol Bartz in September. With this move, interim CEO Tim Morse, will return to his role as Yahoo’s CFO.
Thompson comes from PayPal where he served as president at ebay’s giant payment company since 2008. As Yahoo points out in the announcement press release, Thompson help grow PayPal into a massive force in the online payment scene. Under his leadership, PayPal grew its user base from 50 million to 104 million active users across 190 countries. It’s an impressive feat, no doubt, but Yahoo will certainly present new challenges for Thompson. He’s in for a ride.
“Scott brings to Yahoo! a proven record of building on a solid foundation of existing assets and resources to reignite innovation and drive growth, precisely the formula we need at Yahoo!,” said Roy Bostock, Chairman of the Yahoo! Board said in a statement today. “His deep understanding of online businesses combined with his team building and operational capabilities will restore the energy, focus, and momentum necessary to grow the core business and deliver increased value for our shareholders. The search committee and the entire Board concluded that he is the right leader to return the core business to a path of robust growth and industry-leading innovation.”
Thompson needs to hit the ground running. Yahoo needs a clear path. It needs a renewed focus. Yahoo needs help. The company has been adrift lately, lost in the sea and battling takeover attempts. But with a new chief in place, perhaps Yahoo is ready to once again and stand tall (and maybe reinstall its iconic billboard).